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Prestbury Parish Magazine

July / August 2004

Jesus took Peter, James and John up a high mountain.


Jesus took Peter, James and John up a high mountain.
There he was transfigured before them.
Matthew 17:1,2


The pictures on the front cover of the Parish Magazine this year were drawn in November 2003 by children of the Prestbury After School Club at St Mary's Junior School. This month's picture of the Transfiguration is by Daniel, who was aged ten years.

July / August 2004


A Daunting Task

Summer Sunday Picnic


Sunday Club/School

'Church Magazines - Vital Local Outreach'

Gloucestershire Historic Churches Trust

Lichens in St Mary's Churchyard


Some articles from this month's magazine have been included elsewhere in the web site:

The Calendar for this month

The Diary for this month

The Parish Registers

A Daunting Task

It is thirty-five years since I was ordained priest. Whenever I hear the solemn charge given by the Bishop, a shiver still goes down my spine at the vast size and challenge of the task - to which, in human terms, we are all unequal:

"A priest is called by God to work with the bishop and with his fellow-priests, as servant and shepherd among the people to whom he is sent. He must

* proclaim the word of the Lord,
* call his hearers to repentance,
* in Christ's name absolve and declare the forgiveness of sins,
* baptize and prepare the baptized for Confirmation,
* preside at the celebration of the Holy Communion,
* lead his people in prayer and worship, and intercede for them,
* bless them in the name of the Lord,
* teach and encourage by word and example,
* minister to the sick, and prepare the dying for their death,
* set the Good Shepherd always before him as the pattern of his calling,
* care for the people committed to his charge,
* join with them in a common witness to the world."

The Bishop continues, "In the name of our Lord we bid you remember the greatness of the trust now to be committed to your charge. You are to be messengers, watchmen, and stewards of the Lord; you are to teach and to admonish, to feed and to provide for the Lord's family, to search for his children in the wilderness of this world's temptations and to guide them through its confusions, so that they may be saved through Christ for ever. Remember always with thanksgiving that the treasure now to be entrusted to you is Christ's own flock. Serve them with joy, build them up in faith, and do all in your power to bring them to loving obedience to Christ."

Then, after making solemn vows, those who are to be ordained go before the Bishop who lays his hands upon them and says,

"Send down the Holy Spirit upon your servant N for the office and work of a priest in your Church."

Like all of us, Grant and Peter are going to need all the help the Holy Spirit can give, together with all of our prayers and encouragement.

May God bless them!

Fr Stephen


Summer Sunday Picnic

Sunshine, sunflowers, picnic baskets, and fun and games were the order of the day when local families gathered for a glorious summer Sunday at St Mary's School.

Primary and pre-school children brought mums and dads along to the school field for a bring-your-own picnic, organised games, and songs and prayers on 13th June - and enjoyed a tremendous time of fun and fellowship.

The picnic was organised by the Mission & Outreach team to build links with local families in preparation for a new family-focused service to be launched at St Mary's Church in the autumn.

Each family took home a fledgling sunflower with the message 'come and see us again soon!' which we hope will act as a daily reminder of exciting things to come!

Enormous thanks to all those who came along and made this Summer Sunday such a wonderful and memorable day; also to all those who worked so hard to ensure its success.

Caroline Sexton, M&O



Congratulations to Claire and Vicky on their Confirmation in Gloucester Cathedral on 4th June. It was a very mobile service: we started in the nave for hymns, prayers, readings and a sermon. Fr Stephen was Bishop's Chaplain for the evening and Fr Michael presented Claire and Vicky to the Bishop.

For the second part of the service we all processed up and round to the Lady Chapel at the far eastern end of the cathedral, where two of the twenty-eight candidates were baptised. Then back halfway, to the sanctuary and choir, for the confirmation itself. I was privileged to be Vicky's sponsor, Christine was Claire's, and we stood behind them as Bishop Michael confirmed them.

After the blessing it was back down to the far west end for a photo session.

Frances Murton


Sunday Club/School

Our term will end earlier than usual this year because of the ordination masses of Frs Peter and Grant. However, there will be activity packs available at both services for the children so please do come along and support them on these special days.

Our new term will begin on September 5th at the usual times: 11 o'clock at St Mary's and 9.20 at St Nicolas' and we look forward to seeing you there.

There have been some changes at both ends of the parish this year and we have said goodbye to two of our leaders. Charlotte Radburn at St Nicolas' and Gill Ashman at St Mary's have hung up the scissors and sticky back plastic after many years of faithful service. They have been involved in children's ministry for about fifteen years and have contributed enormously to the education and nurture of our children. Words cannot express our thanks and gratitude adequately. Thank you.

I would like to take this opportunity of thanking all the members of the children's team for their continuing support in this important ministry and their work over the past year.

Linda Biggs


'Church Magazines - Vital Local Outreach'

This was the title of the ACE conference I attended recently at Gloucester cathedral. ACE stands for Association of Church Editors (I think they really mean church magazine editors, though it might be quite fun to try to edit the church), a national organisation which came into being about five years ago to help people like me make your magazine even better than it is.

There were about sixty editors there from various parts of the country and several different denominations. The first talk was Make your Magazine a 'Must-Read' and the speaker a professional journalist. He gave us tips on how to write a story so that people want to read it. (There was an implication here that the editor should also be the journalist, looking for material, interviewing people and writing the articles. Hmm...) For example, a report might start 'The vicar preached a red-hot sermon at Pentecost.' Might you not be more interested to read further if it started 'Following the vicar's red-hot sermon...' or even 'Challenged by the vicar's red-hot sermon...'?

The second talk, Local Outreach - Know your Public, was by a public relations consultant. He suggested that we editors tend to make assumptions about our readers rather than really knowing them. He pointed out that most big companies constantly research their existing customers to make sure the product is right, as well as trying to recruit new customers. Similarly an editor should find out what readers like, want, expect to see in their magazine. We were warned about using jargon and unexplained abbreviations. Does everybody out there understand 'PCC' and 'DCC'?

After lunch (during which, by the way, I went down to the cloisters to see the little clay people, thousands of them just standing looking - see the article in Diologue for details) we split up into smaller groups and had three 'clinics'. First was Design and Layout. Regardless of content, the magazine must be eye-catching, attractively laid out and easy to read. Well, I try. I do use a layout plan, and I am aware which pages are more likely to be read first. Did you know the back page is almost as important as the front one? Think about it next time you pick up a glossy magazine in the shop - many people look at the cover and then flick through from the back. Choice of typeface (font) was also mentioned, and use of pictures.

Next we discussed Editorial Planning. Again, planning the content on paper in advance is advisable so as to ensure that nothing important is omitted, and also gives the editor time to chase up the relevant information. The editor should know what is going on in the parish and who is likely to attend which event, so as to ask for reports, but we were warned not to be threatening! And deadlines - do I really need to tell you what they said about deadlines? 'Be firm' sums it up! Actually most of you are very good about observing the deadline, for which I thank you.

The third clinic was Magazine Management. We discussed advertisements, budget, the Child Protection Act, copyrights, whether the magazine is intended for members only or whether it is an outreach tool to the wider community. 'Should the clergy have any say in what is printed?' What a question! Will I lose my job if I tell you that half the room answered 'no'?

After the clinics we gathered together again for a brief discussion about ACE, which ended up being mainly about the magazine competitions in 2001 and 2003 and the forthcoming one in 2005.

The day ended with Jesus - the Real Communicator, a talk by Rev Carole Challis from Churchdown Methodist Church. She said the magazine editor's job is to use words to promote the Word, to seek to communicate God as we know him in Jesus Christ.

She skimmed through Jesus' life identifying the people he was interested in and how he communicated with them. At his birth there were outsiders and foreigners (shepherds and kings) as well as the devout insiders (Joseph and Mary). Jesus is interested in everybody. The only event recorded from his childhood is his getting lost - an ordinary event. Jesus is interested in the ordinary. Throughout his adulthood he talked with people he knew; he had a sense of humour and knew how to make people smile. He told stories using familiar situations and characters to which his listeners could relate. He knew his audience and understood them. He was interested in them.

Jesus' death reminds us not to miss out or gloss over the sad things, but to use them creatively, sensitively and lovingly. Death is part of the whole picture. His resurrection reminds us that life has always got hope, and we have this hope and good news to offer through the pages of our magazines.

Jesus communicates a God who is interested in the smallest detail. Magazine editors are partners in that task of communicating God's love.

Well, I pray that I may live up to some of that. I enjoyed the conference, and I enjoy editing your magazine, so keep the articles coming. If you didn't write, there would be no job for me and no magazine for you.

Frances Murton, Editor


Gloucestershire Historic Churches Trust

Reg Charity No 280879R

Annual Sponsored Ride and Walk

On Saturday 11 September 2004, the Gloucestershire Historic Churches Trust will be organising its Annual Sponsored Ride and Walk. It is the Trust's major fund raising event and if you can ride a bicycle or a horse or walk, it is hoped you will be willing to participate in it. If none of these applies to you, your support by agreeing to sponsor participants will constitute an excellent alternative. If you could spare some time on the day to keep our churches open and welcome the visitors that would be most appreciated, too.

Further information about the event, together with sponsorship forms, is available from Bob Lyle, Nigel Woodcock and Brian Wood.

Half of the money raised is given to the churches of the choices of the participants. The other half is to be given to the Trust for its grant aid fund, which exists solely to assist churches and chapels facing financial headaches in respect of repairs and restoration costs.

The cause is a good one and, although good weather cannot be guaranteed, all those who have taken part in past years have experienced an enjoyable day.

Please consider how YOU can best support the event. Thank you.

Brian Wood


Lichens in St Mary's Churchyard

Last summer the Lichen Group of the Gloucestershire Naturalists' Society had a field meeting in which St Mary's Churchyard, Prestbury, was included. They came across seventy-one species, a very good total reflecting the range of monuments present, their material and age, together with the management of the churchyard.

Below is a list of the species they found.

Acarospora fuscata
Acarospora smaragdula
Amandinea punctata
Aspicilia calcarea
Aspicilia contorta
Bacidia sabuletorum
Buellia aethalea
Buellia ocellata
Caloplaca aurantia
Caloplaca citrina
Caloplaca flavescens
Caloplaca holocarpa
Caloplaca saxicola
Caloplaca teicholyta
Caloplaca variabilis
Candelariella medians
Candelariella vitellina
Catillaria lenticularis
Collema auriforme
Collema crispum
Diploicia canescens
Diplotomma alboatrum
Dirina massiliensis sorediata
Lecanora albescens
Lecanora campestris
Lecanora conferta
Lecanora crenulata
Lecanora dispersa
Lecanora muralis
Lecanora polytropa
Lecanora saligna
Lecanora symmicta
Lecidea fuscoatra
Lecidella scabra
Lecidella stigmatea
Lepraria incana
Lepraria lobificans
Melanelia fuligenosa
Micarea lignaria
Parmelia sulcata
Pertusaria corallina
Phaeophyscia orbicularis
Physcia adscendens
Physcia caesia
Physcia dubia
Physcia tenella
Physconia grisea
Placynthiella icmalea
Placynthium nigrum
Polysporina simplex
Porpidia soredizodes
Porpidia tuberculosa
Protoblastina rupestris
Protoblastinia calva
Psilolechia lucida
Rhizocarpon reductum
Rinodina gennarii
Sarcgoyne regularis
Scoliciosporum chlorocococcum
Scoliciosporum umbrinum
Tephromela atra
Toninia aromatica
Trapeliopsis flexuosa
Verrucaria baldensis
Verrucaria glaucina
Verrucaria hochstetteri
Verrucaria macrostoma furfuracea
Verrucaria muralis
Verrucaria nigrescens
Xanthoria parietina
Xanthoria polycarpa



Ordinations and First Masses

Fr Grant and Fr Peter will be ordained priest in the Cathedral on Saturday 3 July at 5pm. All are most welcome to attend.

Fr Grant will preside at the Eucharist for the first time at All Saints' on Sunday 4 July at 10.30am (united service) followed by lunch (salmon, salad & strawberries) for all at St Nicolas'.
(NB no 9.30 service at St Nicolas' and no 11.00 service at St Mary's)

Fr Peter will preside at the Eucharist for the first time at St Mary's on Sunday 11 July at 11.00am (united service) followed by a pig roast for all in the Rectory garden.
(NB no 9.30 service at St Nicolas' and no 10.30 service at All Saints')

There will be said Eucharist/Mass at 8.00am in all three churches on both Sundays

For details of lunch tickets please contact the Parish Office on

contents ...

Rockers' Garden Party

Our garden party this year will be on Thursday 8th July 2-4pm at the home of Linda and family. If you are looking after a pre-school child that day, even if not your own, do come along and join in the fun. Older brothers and sisters are welcome to come after school.

This year we are also pleased to invite the new Prestbury Mothers' Union to join with us. If you are interested in the MU, do come along and meet us.

If it is wet we shall hold our usual informal service in St Mary's church at 2pm.

Frances Murton

Prestbury Mothers' Union

The next two meetings of the MU will be a talk about Gloucestershire Prison Projects by Mrs Margaret Marshall on Tuesday 27th July at Prestbury URC and a Summer Barbecue at St Nicolas' on Tuesday 24th August. Both meetings start at 7.30 pm.

We have also been invited to join Rockers' Half-Hour at their annual Garden Party on Thursday 8th July 2-4pm. If wet, service in St Mary's church as usual.

The programme for the remainder of the year is now printed. Please ask Marion Beagley at St Mary's or Eileen Jones at St Nicolas' who will provide you with a copy. We look forward to seeing old and new members for a varied programme at different venues across the parish.

Marion Beagley


to Bob Lyle on being awarded the MBE in the Queen's Birthday honours for services to young people in Prestbury, Gloucestershire.


Another baby Kish!

Congratulations and love from all of us to Anna and Paul Kish on the safe arrival of Charles Stuart Reginald, brother for Madeleine, Alice and Isabelle.

Fr Paul was Assistant Curate here in Prestbury from 1998 to 2001.

Musica Deo Sacra

26th July - 1st August at Tewkesbury Abbey

Musica Deo Sacra is a group of semi-professional singers from many different Cathedral, Collegiate and Recital choirs throughout England. At Tewkesbury Abbey they perform extended and highly complex settings of both the Mass and Gradualia in their proper environment as part of the liturgy of the Church.

In addition to the services at Tewkesbury (for details see leaflets in church) they will be in St Mary's, Prestbury, on Thursday 29th July. Solemn Eucharist will be celebrated at 11am, Mass: Vidi speciosam by Victoria, motets by Tomkins and Byrd, preacher Canon Paul Iles. Solemn Evensong will be at 4pm, music by Howells, Clucas and Dyson, preacher Canon Roger Symon.

Mid-Morning Music at St Mary's

The next mid-morning concert at St Mary's will be on Wednesday 11th August from 10.30am and will feature piano duets (including the famous Carnival of the Animals by Saint-SaŽns). The pianists are two talented young men - Ashok Gupta and Lee Axford.   Please come - you won't be disappointed.

Christine McKelvey

Greenbelt: 'Freedom Bound'

27-30 August, Cheltenham Racecourse

Greenbelt Christian Arts Festival, with its mix of international music, speakers, issues and creative arts, will again be at the Racecourse over the bank holiday weekend at the end of August. For details of ticket prices see In particular there are discounts on day tickets for local residents with proof of GL postcode.

Church Fete -
Saturday 11 September

2.00 - 5.00pm

Scout Field, The Burgage

We are holding a good, old fashioned church fete and require help please. If you could man a stall or a sideshow, then please contact me. We aim to include the village in this fete and show our presence to the local community. We would like to raise at least a four-figure sum, so please support us in whatever way possible.

Marion Beagley

Book Stall

We shall be running a book stall at this event. Now is the time to start looking out books you would like to pass on to a new home, benefiting the new owner, St Mary's church funds and yourselves by creating space to take the bargains you will purchase during the afternoon!!    We are particularly keen to have nearly new books by popular authors, both fiction and non-fiction, and not so enthusiastic about heavy, dusty hardbacks. Children's books are also very welcome.

We would be happy to take contributions at home or at church nearer the time. Collection could also be arranged if necessary. Start sorting out now.

David and Wendy Price

Children's Society

Ruth Rudge will be opening the Children's Society boxes during the months of July/August. If you are a box holder at St Mary's, please bring your box to church or alternatively contact Ruth.

Abertillery Orpheus Male Choir

Saturday 30th October at All Saints' Church at 7.30pm

The choir have kindly agreed to hold another concert for us for the Youth Work in the parish. Last year we raised over £2000 so it is a very easy, worthwhile event. Please support us and sell lots of tickets, which will be available soon. I have a sponsor for all the costs, so every ticket sold goes straight to the cause. Many thanks.

Marion Beagley

Christian Aid Week

The final total paid into the bank was £5,064.70, less than the estimates put in last month's magazine and the notice sheet, as we counted one collection twice in our telephone conversations. Sorry! However, this is still an excellent result and we should like to thank everyone who contributed and all who helped us.

Gill Ashman and Paddy Spurgeon

London Marathon

I would just like to say thank you to all those who sponsored me in this year's London Marathon. The amount raised came to £465 and the money is going to St Mary's Infant School. This was more than was expected and shows the extent of the support we have had. For the record, my time was 2h 54min and placing was 704th (of approx 31,000). I would also like to thank my wife for doing so much running around, organising the sponsors. Many thanks to everyone.

Paul Barnes



Prestbury Parish Magazine - July / August 2004

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